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Wednesday, August 18, 2004
Clipping the Blogoshpere.

I just thought I would give you all a little flavor of some of the great stuff that can be found with just a few clicks around this intra-ma-net thingamajig. So here's a few clippings from some blogs that I read regularly.

From AaronGleeman.com
- Just when people were starting to turn on Corey Koskie, he goes 3-for-5 with a homer and two RBIs against Cleveland on Monday and follows it up by going 3-for-4 with a homer and three RBIs against New York last night. While everyone congratulates Guzman for being an awful player, the fact is that Koskie, even before his recent offensive outburst, has been far more valuable to the team than Guzman this year.

Now, with his back-to-back three-hit games, Koskie is up to .246/.343/.467 on the year, which is very close to the .278/.374/.464 numbers he put up from 2001-2003. Koskie has been worth about 15-20 more runs than a replacement-level third baseman offensively this year, while Guzman has been right around the replacement level. Throw in Koskie's very good defense at third base and Guzman's very mediocre defense at shortstop and it's not even a contest.

I've been eyeing Koskie as a significant upgrade at the hot corner. He's a FA, and with all of the arbitration cases and FA's the Twins have this off-season, I think there's a good chance that he's not resigned. Koskie, having his worst season as a pro, is still posting a better BA, OBP, and SLG than Joe Crede. They grade out pretty equally defensively.

If you can move Joe Crede for starting pitching or solid bullpen help, Koskie would be a perfect left-handed bat to replace him.

From Wait 'til Next Year, the post entitled History Lesson, is a look a the unpredictability that is the MLB draft. Using the 1999 draft as an example.
Rather than go through every round, I have some final numbers to show. Overall, 93 players have made the Major Leagues from the 1999 draft. About 25 aren’t worth a nickel, players like Matt Diaz or Prentice Redman that have little other than a September call-up on their resume. The last player selected to make the Majors was Chad Bentz, originally selected by the Yankees in the 34th round. The southpaw made the Expos Opening Day roster this year, and has been the LOOGY for much of the year. Other players selected below the 30th round are Mike Neu, Nick Green, Erik Eckenstahler, Bo Hart, and Jason Frasor.

Of the 93, 51 of 54.84% are pitchers. The best of the group is likely Sheets, though he draws competition from Cy Young winner Zito and World Series MVP Beckett. The best hitter is undoubtedly Albert Pujols, amazingly drafted in the 13th round. Other good hitters are Hank Blalock, Carl Crawford, and Justin Morneau.

From Black Betsy, the post entitled "Black Betsy Sucks"
And hey, remember what Brad said about mediocrity. They added another 4-6 mark in their 11th 10-game segment to the season, meaning that they have:

five 6-4 stretches;

three 5-5 stretches;

two 4-6 stretches; and

one 3-7 stretch.

Mediocrity is the Sox's middle name. (And you thought it was "White," as in "Freaking White Sox!")

That's not going to cut it, folks. Winning teams have dominant stretches during the season - they go 8-2 a couple of times, 7-3 a bunch of times, and even may go 9-1. The Sox haven't done that. They haven't even put together a 7-3 ten-game segment. What that tells me is that they simply haven't been able to put themselves on a roll, which makes me wonder about how uneven the Sox's talent is. Very good players are surrounded by less-than-replacement-level players. That's not the recipe for being consistent, or being consistently good

This post is great illustration of two different teams when compared to a post from RedBird Nation entitled "Jackpot".
So this close game ended with a lopsided 7-2 score, another victory for the Cards. The team is now 55-18 since their middling 23-22 mark back on May 26th. That's twelve weeks ago. Here's how many losses the Cards have had each week since:


I know most of you can grasp how incredible that is, but if there are any foreigners out there who happened to be raised on cricket and need a little guidance, I'll tell you this: baseball doesn't usually work that way. It's not like 400-meter swimming, where a Michael Phelps can employ good form and churn out a win simply by increasing his lead, inch by inch, with each repetitive stroke. See, a baseball season usually works more like pinball -- lots of up and downs, a few jackpots, lots of gutter balls.

That's just a small collection of the good stuff that's out there. Baseballblogs.org is an index of pretty much all of these crazy blogs, and offers a live RSS feed. So check 'em out.